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Book Review: Sadhana Who Stalked Her? by Spandana Chakradhar

Sadhana Who Stalked Her? by Spandana Chakradhar is a psychological cum suspense thriller. As the title suggests, Sadhana is the lead character of the novel. She is beautiful, elegant, sober, and possesses a few more qualities that you may stumble upon while reading about her story. Because of beauty and other qualities, men hardly withstand her charm; they fall for her quite often. But this does not make her life easy going; she has her own bunch of problems. If you are of the opinion that beautiful girls lead a smooth life because of rich men around them, well it’s about time to change your perception.

Inside the couple of chapters, you will get the hunch that she has had dull childhood because of her father, whom she rarely responds to. Her potential to meet the responsibilities is evident as when she leaves Hyderabad and her mother Laxmi to take up a better job in Delhi. Financially, they are suppressed, and they have to payback some loan. Thus, to get more financial stability, she moves to Delhi. However, little did she know that her life is going to be changed forever? Like many strugglers, in a new city with a new job, she too starts living in a PG. Through one of her colleagues Asha, she gets introduced to Krishnakunj – a big and beautiful home – where other characters join her. Among all other characters, it is Manav and Abhi that get into tussle to get her love, though they both are friends but this lady loosens their equation.

However, soon Sadhana begins experiencing being stalked. The episodes of stalking do not cease even when a young man is caught red-handed and handed over to the police. Abhi and Manav grow worried about her safety, as both are in love with her, though Sadhana has yet to decide and wait as who is going to be her partner? Entry of these two men, make the novel look like a love triangle, however at its core it remains a suspense thriller.

Even when she moves on to a big, well-connected, and well-guarded house ‘Krishnakunj’, stalking does not stop. In fact, its intensity grows. Vani, Anirudh, Abhi, Aasha, and the father-like figure Baba, are all dwellers of Krishnakunj. With so many people around, in a well-guarded home, how can a stalker act like a shadow? There is something that needs to be unveiled…soon….before it’s too late.

The author has spiced up the overall mood of the novel to make it a truly suspense novel by molding the lead character’s attributes, like her habit of reading horror novels, carelessness, and so on. Another great aspect of the book is that with time Sadhana grows familiar with stalking; however, it turns out be her strength, as she finally takes to face and end it. That’s the temerity of the lady. Mid way, there is a revelation of the stalker that shocks everyone, however the problem does not solve there. The story advances, and her stalker shows no respite. Every time a stalker is caught, you feel as the story is over, but there remain many pages to read.  And the same time, you feel that something is missing….the clues need to be arranged once again. This way some revelations of a few stalkers take place. But well before Sadhana meets her final stalker, she needs to endure a lot of privation and the route is treacherous.

As a reader, you will remain excited as to know why there is a stalker behind her...and for what…how he manages to grab her most of the time. It is worth praise that in the face of adversity, Sadhana’s courage sees no dip. Other than being high on entertainment quotient, the novel addresses a very common issue found in India – safety of women. As in one of the chapters it is mentioned, "No place is safe for women. They need to learn to defend."

The writing style of the author is subtle and brilliant that help moving the story at a brisk pace. Also, Spandana has made use of available characters and settings and locations judiciously to deliver near-perfect suspense novel, otherwise in contemporary locations like Delhi metro city, it is bit tough to weave a thriller. Nothing comes openly and the author has made a point as not to spoon feed – so the more you read, the more you wish to arrive at the final criminal. However, that’s a sort of anxiety get developed when you are with a good and classic suspense novel. All in all, it is a worth investing time and money.


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